The misconceptions and wrongful characterization of e-sports


ART BY ANNIE LIANG

BY GARY LEE

STAFF WRITER


Since its creation, video games have long been discriminated against as a source of entertainment. Due to its popularity and influence, that bias has been carried over to the professional’s scenes of gaming.


Like most professional sports, video games were created to pass the time doing something enjoyable; they are byproducts of the advancement in technology at the time. As games started to develop over the years, people have started to professionally compete in certain games, like League of Legend, which led to the creation of e-sports.


At first, no one took it seriously and believed that e-sports would not be anything special. However, when millions of fans started to say that e-sport is an official sport, a debate started.


A sport, by definition, is an activity that constitutes physical exertion and skill in which two or more groups of people compete to win and to entertain fans. In this sense, e-sport itself fulfills both of the categorical requirements and as such should be considered as an official sport.


This viewpoint, however, is not a common notion shared by everyone. There are many people who oppose the statement, arguing that e-sport is not physical or that it does not constitute enough full-body skills to be deemed as a competitive sport. Opponents state that e-sports are just video games and that they should not be categorized the same as football or basketball.


In reality, while it is true that e-sport may not live up to the physical expectations of the populus, many other aspects of video gaming are adequate, if not even overcoming some of those standards of an “official” sport. Sports are seen as a way to entertain, sell merchandise and compete, which e-sports does already.


The common misconception is that since gaming requires less physical activity to compete in, the gamers supposedly put in less work than real sports players. In truth, while it may not be as physically demanding as outdoor sports, the players themselves still put in the same amount of effort into their competitions. For example, on average professional sports players usually spend about 5-6 hours per day practicing, while professional gamers spend around 7-9 hours.


Moreover, another against e-sports argument is that there are no physical skills involved in playing video games. This opinion, however, does not take into account the many skills, though not physical, that professional gamers do acquire. From how fast the mind processes information, to how quickly it acts upon them, there are countless skills the players need to master if they want to compete.


Additionally, the platform of competitive gaming itself is an even battlefield to pretty much anyone with enough time and a decent computer. In physical sports, there are certain aspects that can be improved through training; however, at the same time, there are also other uncontrollable factors that restrict people from reaching their goals. There is a reason why almost no one in the National Basketball Association is shorter than 6 feet or the fact that a lot of sports are separated by gender. No matter how much one trains, it is biologically impossible for them to gain the advantage that other people are born with. Whereas for e-sports, the most unfair things one can argue is the speed of the internet or the speed of their computer, two factors that can easily be fixed during any competitive scenes.


It is due to this factor that e-sports were able to spread its influence so much quicker than any other sport. Rather than being a physical sport, this activity places everyone on an equal platform where anyone can win if they put in enough time and effort.


Namely, the whole point to sports is are for the purpose of entertainment and competitions. Yet for many, that concept is flawed, dictated by those given with a greater number of advantages. E-sport is something equal to everyone and what other sports can compare to gaming in the truest sense of fair competitions and enjoyment for all?


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© 2020 by Editor-in-Chief Emma Chang. Proudly created by Volume 52.